FRANCIS ALBERT SINATRA: December 12, 1915 – May 14, 1998
(ABOVE: Jack Silbert photo)
Twenty years ago today, when the world lost Frank Sinatra, it turned to Hoboken for consolation.
Camera crews were lined up outside the PATH station, then made their way to the makeshift shrine at 415 Monroe, the spot where Frank entered the world. Places like Piccolo’s, Leo’s and Biggie’s were jam-packed with folks all collectively lamenting the loss of Sinatra at venues that were known to hold him dear.
“I’ll never forget the day that he passed away,” Patleo “Patty Boy” Spaccavento recalled in a 2015 hMAG interview with Jack Silbert. “This place, you could not get in. It was wall-to-wall media, wall-to-wall customers. I was throwing the media out because I wanted to take care of my customers, my people.”
Jukeboxes in the corner bars were belting out Frank favorites, as Hoboken old and new came together and paid their respects in a manner befitting Sinatra.
They drank to him.
“Hey drink up all you people
Order anything you see
And have fun you happy people
The laugh and the drinks on me…”
Here at hMAG, we like to keep that candle burning for Hoboken’s native son. On the occasion of Frank’s 100th birthday, we had the honor of sitting down with esteemed writer Pete Hamill at Leo’s Grandevous to discuss “WHY SINATRA STILL MATTERS.” Of course Frank’s relationship with Hoboken was always a bit complicated, as renowned Sinatra biographer James Kaplan explained in our piece, “THIS TOWN.” And speaking of this town, Frank certainly left his mark, as writer Jack Silbert details in his “WALKING WITH THE CHAIRMAN” recap of the Hoboken Historical Museum‘s Sinatra Walking Tour.
Meanwhile, every Friday we feature FRIDAYS ARE FOR FRANK, with a nod to the man himself and his timeless music—a weekly reminder that “It’s Sinatra’s World, We Just Live In It.”